Cobh Ramblers were denied all three points at St Colman’s Park this afternoon as Shelbourne snatched an equaliser with the last kick of the game.
The home side looked on course for all three points after captain Christopher McCarthy had put Ramblers a goal up from the penalty spot after 75 minutes.
When Karl Caulfield was fouled just inside the Shelbourne box, referee Eoghan O’Shea had no hesitation pointing to the spot. ‘Kaka’ stepped up and showed nerves of steel to send Shels keeper Dean Delany the wrong way and put the ball into the back of the net.
However the visitors make the trip back up the M8 to Dublin with a point after Adam Evans’s cross from the left touchline looped high into the air and dropped over Paul Hunt’s head and into the back of the net – there was literally nothing the Ramblers keeper could do about it.
Ramblers, playing in their change strip of black with yellow trim, made just one change from the side that defeated Longford Town last week, with Ross Mann coming into the starting 11 at the expense of Ian Mylod
It was the visitors who had the game’s first real chance on the quarter of an hour mark. Aaron Ashe found himself in space in the Ramblers box, but flashed his shot wide of Paul Hunt’s goal when he should have done better, given the space he time he had on the ball.
Shels’ Adam Evans found the target not long after, receiving the ball with his back to goal before turning smartly to get his shot away from 20 yards, only to see his effort go straight into the hands of Hunt.
Ramblers took a while to settle, and it wasn’t until the 23rd minute when they had their first attempt on Dean Delany’s goal, Ross Mann battling with two Shels defenders to win the ball, however his effort was deflected and collected comfortably by Delany.
Ramblers came closest to opening the scoring just before half time. Donnellan was fouled by Niall Lanigan in the middle of the park, an offence for which the Shels midfielder was shown a yellow card by referee Eoghan O’Shea. Donnellan picked himself up to float the resultant free kick into the penalty spot, with Dean Swords rising highest to get his head on the ball – his looping header nearly caught Delaney out, with the Shels keeper just about getting a hand to it to tip the ball on to the crossbar – Delany was relieved to see the ball go out for a corner.
James English went close to breaking the deadlock on the hour mark, his clever hooked shot over his shoulder and with his back to goal looked like it was destined for the back of the net, but Paul Hunt pulled off a world class save to claw the ball away from the line and to safety.
After McCarthy had put Ramblers ahead from the spot the visitors upped the pressure as they went in search of an equalising goal, and it was Evans who silenced the large home crowd with the last kick of the game.
Next up for Cobh Ramblers is another home game, as we host Athlone Town at St Colman’s Park next Saturday March 18th.
Cobh Ramblers (4-3-3) : Hunt, Lowth, O’Riordan, McSweeney, O’Donnell, Caulfield, Christopher McCarthy (Capt), Donnellan (78’ Abbott), Christopher (69’ McNamara), Mann, Swords (62’ Whelan)
Subs not used : Mylod, Murphy, Fleming, Scott McCarthy.
Shelbourne: Delany, Brown, McEnteer, Collins, Prendergast, Lanigan, Ashe, Rooney, English, Byrne, Evans
Subs not used : Quinn, Shannon, Grimes, Caffrey, Ryan.
Referee : Eoghan O’Shea